Reviewing the History of Philanthropy in Black Education

By Jackson, Rodney M. | Black Issues in Higher Education, February 3, 2000 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Reviewing the History of Philanthropy in Black Education


Jackson, Rodney M., Black Issues in Higher Education


Reviewing the History of Philanthropy in Black Education

A mid the burgeoning literature about modern philanthropy, Eric Anderson and Alfred A. Moss Jr. make a significant contribution to our understanding of philanthropy as an agent of social change. In Dangerous Donations: Northern Philanthropy and Southern Black Education, 1902-1930, not only do the authors critique the potential and limitations of philanthropy, but they provide significant insights into an important era in Black history and American education.

Anderson and Moss recount the complex story of one of the earliest attempts by northern philanthropists to bring about major social change in the U.S. -- by increasing educational opportunities for African Americans in the South within a few decades of the close of the Civil War. Until the latter part of the 19th century, the education of Blacks was largely the domain of missionary societies, notably those of the Congregational, Methodist, Presbyterian and Baptist Churches. The work of these societies was "first supplemented and then overshadowed" by secular foundations -- for example, the Slater Fund and The Peabody Fund, established in 1881 and 1887, respectively.

The most significant foundations, however, both in terms of their extensive resources and their ultimate influence, were the General Education Board established in 1902 with $33 million in gifts from the Rockefellers and the Southern Education Board established in 1901. Although other foundations would have a significant impact on the education of Blacks and Whites, none had more influence than these two -- especially the Rockefeller-funded General Education Board. These were the two foundations after which the others modeled themselves.

Anderson and Moss carefully trace the evolution of Black education in the South. There were the early missionary societies that believed it was a religious obligation to "elevate the freedmen." Then there were the early philanthropists, such as millionaire merchant John F. Slater, who viewed southern education as a "patriotic duty that could not well be shirked without disaster." And there was the General Education board's "Scientific and efficiently organized philanthropy."

The authors also explore the various conflicting forces that constricted the work of the northern philanthropists. These included the demands of African Americans not only for increased educational opportunities, demanding something on par with that available to Whites, but also for control of these same institutions.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Reviewing the History of Philanthropy in Black Education
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?